Wednesday, October 21, 2015

"Trudeau victory may bolster chances for FTA with China" published in the China Daily on October 21, 2015

My views are quoted in Paul Werlizkin's report "Trudeau victory may bolster chances for FTA with China" published in the China Daily on October 21, 2015:

I do expect that Canada will ratify the TPP under the Trudeau government.  I would imagine that Canada will further support Chinese entry into the TPP. Mr Trudeau is on record as supporting much more Chinese state investment in Canada to build Canadian prosperity. He believes that it is important to Canada's future prosperity to engage the Government of China as closely as possible and therefore will likely not emphasise human rights and security concerns to the same extent as the Harper government. I would therefore expect that under Justin Trudeau we may adopt a China policy similar to that of Great Britain.

Here are Paul's original questions and my answers by e-mail:
Will Trudeau's win change China-Canada relations and if so in what area (immigration, trade, investment etc.)?
While it is unlikely that the new Justin Trudeau government will have a different policy on Canada – China immigration, Mr Trudeau has been very clear that it will be a priority for his government to encourage much higher levels of Chinese trade and especially Chinese investment in Canada. I expect that early on his mandate he will direct the Canadian Government to very proactively respond to the suggestions of the Chinese authorities on how to make Canada a much more attractive investment venue for Chinese State enterprises seeking to invest abroad.

Are the Chinese relieved that the Harper government is out?
The Harper government put a lot of stress on human rights and allegations of espionage in its China policy. It is likely that the Government of China will be very happy to see a new Canadian Government that like the British Government will align itself more closely with China's foreign policy interests and priorities.

Does Trudeau's win improve the chances for a free trade agreement with China?
I am confident that a Trudeau Government will look very closely at the Government of China's proposal to establish a free trade agreement with Canada and that this will likely be realised before the next election four years from now.

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